Beauty is in Your Mind, Not in the Rose

“When a beautiful rose dies beauty does not die because it is not really in the rose. Beauty is an awareness in the mind. It is a mental and emotional response that we make. We respond to life as though it were perfect. When we go into a forest we do not see the fallen rotting trees. We are inspired by a multitude of uprising trees…The goal of life is happiness and to respond to life as though it were perfect is the way to happiness. It is also the way to positive art work.”

Agnes Martin In ‘Beauty Is the Mystery of Life’, 1989

Friendship, 1963 by Agnes Martin

Agnes Martin: the artist mystic who disappeared into the desert

The Agnes Martin Gallery at the Harwood Museum of Art is an octagonal gallery with an oculus installed overhead, and four yellow Donald Judd benches placed directly under the oculus. The gallery was designed according to the artist’s wishes in order to accommodate Martin’s gift of seven large paintings made between 1993 and 1994, when Martin returned to Taos.

What Resembles The Grave But Isn’t

A poem by Anne Boyer

Always falling into a hole, then saying “ok, this is not your grave, get out of this hole,” getting out of the hole which is not the grave, falling into a hole again, saying “ok, this is also not your grave, get out of this hole,” getting out of that hole, falling into another one; sometimes falling into a hole within a hole, or many holes within holes, getting out of them one after the other, then falling again, saying “this is not your grave, get out of the hole”; sometimes being pushed, saying “you can not push me into this hole, it is not my grave,” and getting out defiantly, then falling into a hole again without any pushing; sometimes falling into a set of holes whose structures are predictable, ideological, and long dug, often falling into this set of structural and impersonal holes; sometimes falling into holes with other people, with other people, saying “this is not our mass grave, get out of this hole,” all together getting out of the hole together, hands and legs and arms and human ladders of each other to get out of the hole that is not the mass grave but that will only be gotten out of together; sometimes the willful-falling into a hole which is not the grave because it is easier than not falling into a hole really, but then once in it, realizing it is not the grave, getting out of the hole eventually; sometimes falling into a hole and languishing there for days, weeks, months, years, because while not the grave very difficult, still, to climb out of and you know after this hole there’s just another and another; sometimes surveying the landscape of holes and wishing for a high quality final hole; sometimes thinking of who has fallen into holes which are not graves but might be better if they were; sometimes too ardently contemplating the final hole while trying to avoid the provisional ones; sometimes dutifully falling and getting out, with perfect fortitude, saying “look at the skill and spirit with which I rise from that which resembles the grave but isn’t!”

Your Most Loved Poets

The Red Hand Files

“I try to read, at the very least, a half-hour of poetry a day, before I begin to do my own writing. It jimmies open the imagination, making the mind more receptive to metaphor and abstraction and serves as a bridge from the reasoned mind to a stranger state of alertness, in case that precious idea decides to drop by.”

– Nick Cave

Artificial Intelligence and the Art of Mario Klingemann


Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Day Auction on 6 March features a unique creation by artist Mario Klingemann. Memories of Passersby I is a machine installation that uses neural networks to generate an infinite stream of portraits.

Sotheby’s Is Entering the AI Art Fray, Selling a Surreal Artwork by One of the Movement’s Pioneers This Spring

The technology used in the artwork heading to auction is cutting-edge, as no one else has been able to create a machine that can work to create portraits at such speed and at such a high resolution (and that can also fit into a small box to boot).

“I guess I have to thank everyone who plays computer games,” Klingemann says. “Thanks to the high demands of games, graphics cards have become extremely powerful and versatile.” He likens the power consumption of the system to the energy needed to run a fridge. That said, the real-time aspect and the high resolution took “quite some time” to perfect, according to the artist. All in all, he says, he spent about three months training the models, writing the code, and designing the installation.

Mario Klingemann, Portrait of a Woman . Image courtesy Sotheby’s.

International Clash Day

A Photo of the Clash from the Combat Rock Album
The Only Band That Matters

Such a great way to celebrate the only band that really did matter.

Each year on February 7th, music lovers all over the world observe International Clash Day, an annual celebration of seminal UK punk band The Clash, and a recognition of the enduring influence of their music and human rights message.

Listen live on KEXP.org

February Links

Favorites & Follow Ups: Updated More Frequently

Can’t Unsee – A game to explain the pain of front-end development

Bill Callahan, the only sad man worth loving

On making work in new surroundings: Visual artist Cory Arcangel discusses leaving NYC and moving to Norway, the change in process and perspective that results from having a child, and how he will always be just a media artist from Buffalo.